Chicken & Morel Marsala

First a big shout and thanks to Facebook Friend and PR Guru Steve from the Windy City for shipping me some morel mushrooms he scored on the weekend.  When Steve put up photos of the mushrooms on Facebook, I was very envious and asked Steve where he got them, two days later they were in my kitchen.  Thanks again Steve.

Morel Mushrooms

Somehow I thought these mushrooms were going to be smaller but these beauties are about 3-5 inches tall and very distinctive in shape.  They are surprisingly light in weight because they are hollow in the middle.

But what to make with these little treasures?  Steve suggested this recipe but Donna has a great mushroom marsala recipe that we know and have been successful with in the past, so we decided that we would go with that.

Chicken and Morel Marsala– ingredients: 4 Boneless chicken breasts – 4-6 oz each, ¼ Cup of seasoned flour for dredging, 8 oz of morel mushrooms sliced, 2/3 Cup of Marsala wine and 1 ½ Cups of chicken stock. 

Marsala Wine

To make the Chicken and Morel Marsala, Donna dredged the chicken breasts in the seasoned flour and then pan-fried them in a little olive oil on medium heat for two minutes per side.  The breasts were then removed to a platter and tented.  The mushrooms were placed in the same sauté pan and seasoned with salt and pepper.  Once the mushrooms were tender, she added the wine and stirred to get any of the chicken bits off the pan.  The mushrooms continued to cook until the wine evaporated.  Once that happened, the chicken stock, chicken and platter juices were added back into the pan and simmered for 10 more minutes. After 10 minutes, the chicken was removed to a clean platter and the remaining sauce was reduced by half.  That took about 5 minutes.  Once the sauce was reduced, we spooned it over the chicken and sprinkled the meat with some fresh parsley.Chicken and Morel Marsala

For any recipe that requires wine, I suggest that you buy a wine that you would drink.  So this is the Marsala that we have been using and it works very well.  It costs about $13 a bottle so very affordable and yet very drinkable.  Use the comment link or the reply box to suggest other Marsala’s that you have had success with.

To go along with the chicken, we made garlic mashed potatoes with scallions and sauteed green beans.  I used a tomato slice to garnish the plate and add some colour.  I am a big fan of presentation but when the dish was coming together, the aromas from the garlic, mushrooms and Marsala wine alerted Ryan, Robbie and unofficial son number four Milo that something special was cooking.  (Steve warned about the aroma)  So they started to circle and rushed my plating.  So I hurried and the result in presention is not the best but the taste made up for lack of plating perfection. 

The concentrated flavours of the morels and the marsala in the sauce is wonderful.  The earthyness of the mushrooms is balanced well with the sweetness of the wine.  The chicken turned out tender, moist and well seasoned.  The garlic mashed potato with scallions are a classic in our house because the crunch and tang of the scallions match well with creamy sweetness of the potatoes.  For some reason, I love green beans and a light saute brings out their sweetness and flavour.  All in all a great dish made better by the morels.  Thanks again Steve.

BTW the boys cleaned their plates and loved the dish.  Cool.

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